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Chicago Cubs vs. Minnesota Twins preview, Saturday 6/30, 1:20 CT

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The Cubs go for their third straight win.

Matt Marton-USA TODAY Sports

Let’s talk about Yu Darvish again!

He’s received a cortisone shot in his sore elbow, which has been diagnosed with “elbow impingement” by the Texas Rangers team orthopedist.

Darvish will have to wait three to five days before he can resume throwing.

He has been on the disabled list since the end of May with right triceps tendinitis. After feeling pain during a bullpen session on Thursday, Darvish will not make his return Saturday against the Twins as had been expected. Tyler Chatwood will start for the Cubs instead.

”It was easy” for Maddon to tell Darvish wasn’t right on Thursday because it “wasn’t a normal throwing stroke.”

The setback comes after Darvish threw a successful simulated game last week and a rehab start on Monday for Class A South Bend. Maddon said he assumes that whenever Darvish does come back, the righty will need another rehab start before returning to the Majors, though that hadn’t been determined.

”I would bet another rehab,” Maddon said. “That’s what normally would occur.”

So, we’re looking at probably at least another week before another rehab start, probably next weekend or early the following week. If all goes well then, Darvish could return after the All-Star break.

If Chatwood, who’s starting today, could cut down on the walks, the Cubs would be able to cover Darvish’s absence just fine until after the break.

As always, we await developments. Meanwhile, there’s a game this afternoon.

Here are today’s particulars.

Cubs lineup:

Twins lineup:

Tyler Chatwood, RHP vs. Adalberto Mejia, LHP

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Tyler Chatwood. Walks, walks, walks. And then more walks.

It’s hard to not talk about the walks, because they have defined Chatwood’s season. His 63 walks lead the major leagues and his walk rate of 8.3 per nine innings would, too, if he had enough innings to qualify.

He’s just going to have to cut down on those, period, full stop.

He last faced the Twins last year, May 18, 2017 in Minneapolis. As you might have guessed, walks were involved. If you click on that link and look at the boxscore, Chatwood’s line should look very, very familiar.

Got nothing more here. Just stop walking people, Tyler. Please.

Adalberto Mejia made 21 starts for the Twins in 2017 and the results were middling: 4.50 ERA, 1.571 WHIP, 0.8 bWAR. He started this year in Triple-A, missed a few weeks with a blister, then returned in late May. His last five starts in Triple-A have been pretty good: 1.41 ERA, 0.844 WHIP, but again, that’s the minor leagues. He hasn’t pitched in the majors at all this year.

He has never faced the Cubs or anyone on the current Cubs roster. That’s been a recipe for disaster for many pitchers the Cubs have faced, but I’m thinking not this time. The Cubs like to hit lefthanders and this should be a guy they can hit.

Today’s game is on ABC7 Chicago. It’s also on MLB Network (outside the Chicago and Minneapolis markets).

Here is the complete MLB.com Mediacenter for today.

MLB.com Gameday

Baseball-reference.com game preview

SB Nation game preview

Please visit our SB Nation Twins site Twinkie Town. If you do go there to interact with Twins fans, please be respectful, abide by their individual site rules and serve as a good representation of Cub fans in general and BCB in particular.

The 2018 Game Thread procedure will be the same as the one used during 2017. Here’s how it works.

You’ll find the game preview posted separately on the front page, two hours before game time (90 minutes for some early day games following night games).

At the same time, a StoryStream containing the preview will also post on the front page. The First Pitch Thread and all the overflow threads will be published in that stream, as well as the recap. The recap will also live on the front page as a separate post, and at the time I write the recap I will rename the stream “Cubs vs. (Team) (Day of Week) Game Threads” so you can go back and find every thread related to that particular game.

You will also be able to find the preview, First Pitch Thread, all the overflow threads and recap in the box marked “Chicago Cubs Game Threads” at the bottom of the front page (you can also find them in this section link). They will also appear in the game’s StoryStream as noted above.

The First Pitch thread will post at five minutes before game time, then an overflow thread at one hour, two hours and 2:45 after the scheduled game time.

Discuss amongst yourselves.